Home > Work & Employment > Farewell Speech If You're Leaving a Company

Farewell Speech If You're Leaving a Company

By: Chris Hogan MSc - Updated: 26 Sep 2020 | comments*Discuss
 
Farewell Speech Leaving Speech Farewell

When it's time to leave a company you'll often be given leaving gifts, or at least a card. It might be wise to have a farewell speech prepared, even if you end up not delivering it.

What you say in a farewell speech depends on the culture of the company, how long you've been there and how much you've enjoyed working at the company. If you are retiring from a company where you have worked all your life then you'll almost certainly be the guest of honour at a major function.

But for most people it will be a hastily assembled group of colleagues just before lunch on a Friday afternoon. So don't get too hung up on it and make major notes to read from, but make sure you have in mind the main points that you are going to say.

1. Potted History in a Farewell Speech

Some of the people listening to you might not have been with the company for as long as you so a potted history is a good place to start.

  • Start at the beginning of your work here, no need to mention what came before, unless it's just in passing.
  • Keep it brief, bullet points only.
  • Keep mentions of promotions to the relevant ones to avoid looking big-headed.
  • Mention achievements but be modest.

Example: For those of you who haven't been here for as long as I have - I joined in 1995 from school / college / previous employer and worked for Mr. Smith before coming to this department via Sales and Overseas Marketing. I was privileged to be part of the team that successfully implemented Project Phoenix and there have been many other major milestones and achievements that I've enjoyed in my 14 years with the company.

2. Thank People When Leaving

If you've worked in a company for a long time then there'll probably be a number of people you'll want to thank.

  • You can't thank everyone so make a general thank you first.
  • Pick out those people who have particularly supported you.
  • Don't forget to thank everyone for any gifts and/or cards.

Example: There are many people here, both past and present, that have helped make my time here (pleasant / enjoyable / worthwhile). There isn’t time to thank everyone and I think you'd all fall asleep if I tried, but rest assured you are all appreciated. I'd like to particularly thank Bill for his support …. (and so on).

3. Weigh Up the Brickbats Before You Let Fly

Some people think that a leaving speech is an opportunity to score a few points against those people who have knocked them in the past or otherwise caused trouble. We're not going to tell you not to do that but it needs careful thought.

  • Consider the workmates or team you will leave behind.
  • Do you want to be remembered as someone bitter who rejected the chance to say some good words about the company?
  • If you must mention the bad times, don't be specific.
  • Ask yourself if it’s better to gloss over the problems and leave on a positive note.

Example: Most of you here will know about the difficulties we've faced in getting a cohesive team together and (notice the use of 'and' rather than 'but', as that's a word with negative connotations) I sincerely hope that efforts to improve that situation will continue in my absence.

4. Humour in a Leaving Speech

A farewell speech is a good opportunity for humour. A few well-aimed jokes at the institution and its culture will go down well.

  • Pick the right targets – yourself if you are unsure
  • Only make personal jokes about people if you're sure that they won't be offended.
  • Pick neutral, universal targets for your humour.
Example: One of the things I won’t miss is the coffee from the machines here! I much enjoyed the five-aside-competition every year although I'm not sure my team mates will share my emotions!

5. Time Your Speech to Perfection

People won’t thank you for keeping them away from their work for half an hour so five minutes, ten at the absolute maximum, is fine for a farewell speech.

  • Give your speech a beginning, middle and end
  • Read it out loud and time yourself
  • Trim it until it is about five minutes long.
You may think that's a very short time but you can say a lot in five minutes. Try writing a few notes out about anything, read them out loud and time yourself and you'll be surprised at how much you can say in a very short time.

6. Get Down the Pub!

To wind up with a final flourish, assuming the culture of the company allows a leaving drink, make sure that you tell people where and when you'll be going.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Am leaving my company which I have worked for 5 years plus. Please i need a good farewell speech as i leave the company
stCharles - 26-Sep-20 @ 4:34 PM
I am leaving my job next week after being with the company for almost 20 years. I made the decision to leave due to my youngest child not being well. My manager has been a great strength of support over my time with the company and i am very grateful for everything she has done for me. Help me prepare a short speech for everyone i worked with
Shauna - 23-Sep-20 @ 10:05 AM
I m leaving TATA AIA life and I worked for 3 yearsin this organization so please send me th good one speech for myself
Mitesh - 3-Jul-20 @ 11:52 AM
my company was merged with a big company now we are going to new company hiring,so we want to talk about the and share old company.so i need a effective speech to talk in an official meeting.so pls send me speech
MANNEM GOPI - 29-May-20 @ 7:09 AM
Send me a farewell speech as I am leaving my school after 4 years working as a teacher.please prepare a short speech for thanking the school staffs and principal and supervisor.
Anu - 21-May-20 @ 10:41 AM
Tomorrow is my last working day in my company. please prepare a short speech for thanking to my teammates and my seniors.
Naren - 9-Apr-20 @ 8:07 AM
Tomorrow i have a farewell dinner for the company that i have been work for 2 years. I want to say one or two word for thanks everyone. Please help me to prepare them. Thank you
Hani - 11-Mar-20 @ 2:45 PM
I'm leaving my company after 17 years - going on retirement. Please assist with a short but effective saying goodbye and thanking some of my colleagues
lollo - 27-Jan-20 @ 12:22 PM
I was worked in hotel 7 and half years...I left 2yers ago..I wanted to thank them...pls assist me
Mugunth - 3-Dec-19 @ 3:29 AM
I m leaving private bank and I worked for 3 and half year in this organization so please send me the good speech for myself.
Rags - 24-Jul-19 @ 12:14 PM
Send me a farewell speech as I am leaving my present office after one year of service
kuttan - 10-Jul-19 @ 5:44 PM
I m leaving private service and I worked for 2 and half year in this organization so please send me th good one speech for myself
Sk - 6-Jul-19 @ 9:02 PM
Next Monday 8th of July is my last working day in my school as support staff. I have work their for 2 years please help me prepare a shortsweet speech for thanking the school staffs and Headmistress and the Bursar. I will really appreciate this if you can help me.
Amoja - 4-Jul-19 @ 2:07 PM
I am leaving company after 11 months. I have got the chance from management to be a buying assistant, they teached me a lot. I am very graceful for the opportunity. Once I have learned the ropes after 8 months (first 3 months I was a receptionist) I need to leave, the reason is relocation. Please help me to preper farewell speach. Thank you, Hannah
Hannah29 - 23-Mar-19 @ 3:14 AM
Tomorrow is my last working day in my school. please prepare a short speech for thanking the school staffs and principal and supervisor
DEEPA - 15-Mar-19 @ 6:40 PM
I need three short speeches to thank at my farewell parties organised by various groups. It should be very short. 1.To my friends 2 To my colleagues 3 To the Old Boys of my College
franky - 15-Sep-18 @ 4:22 AM
Tommorow I leave the company so please guide me for farewell speech
Jigs - 25-Aug-18 @ 1:20 PM
Tomorrow is my last day and my coworkers have prepare a farewell party at the company I’ve been the custodian’s company for four years an a half, I would like to tell them my apriciation for had treat me good and kindness
Toto - 1-Aug-18 @ 8:23 PM
I m leaving private service and I worked for 2 and half year in this organization so please send me th good one speech for myself
Pappu - 22-Jul-18 @ 8:02 AM
I'm a army officer and transfer from one place to another camp. I want to give a farewell speech after farewell party organized by officers in percent place.
Mok - 9-Jul-18 @ 1:02 PM
I have been transferred from one city to another city in same company. Need farewell speech to post it on Facebook.
Akash - 9-Jun-18 @ 8:38 AM
I leave the job for joining another job. Need for speech for Office Mail.
Hira - 29-May-18 @ 2:56 AM
I am posted out to another city ( My Home town city ) in same organisation after 06 yrs of working. Need good speech in simple English
KT - 15-Apr-18 @ 8:17 PM
I am working in retail industry. But I got transferred from one restaurant to onther restaurant I need small massage have to wrote while I am transferring
Jayesh - 5-Mar-18 @ 4:00 AM
I'm a army officer and transfer from one place to another camp. I want to give a farewell speech after farewell party organized by officers in percent place.
Anu - 9-Jan-18 @ 4:15 AM
MITUL DESAI - Your Question:
I am transferring from one city to other city of same company after working 10 years. Need a good speech for the self

Our Response:
Good luck with the move, we hope you find our site useful.
GreatSpeech - 5-Dec-17 @ 11:10 AM
I am transferring from one city to other city of same company after working 10 years....... Need a good speech for the self
MITUL DESAI - 2-Dec-17 @ 8:25 AM
I am retiring from an insurance company after working for 20 years. Need assistance with the speech and advise to give to those who just started their careers.
Nnanagae - 3-Nov-17 @ 8:54 AM
help me write a short and emotional speech, i have been working in a youthful organisations for the past 7years.
kimesh - 2-Nov-17 @ 9:57 AM
pls help me to make easy and clear speech
SUHAS - 26-Sep-17 @ 7:07 AM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments